Last issue started the new arc in Transformers, and it started slow. Now with issue 10, business has picked up, and what a read!
Following last issue’s revelation that the Combaticons are active in South Korea, Spike and the Autobots have mobilized. Mind you, they’ve got to do so without being seen. That’s right… they need to truly be robots in disguise!
There’s not a ton of plot beyond that, aside from the final pages. The two things this book is long on, however, are comedy and action, in that order. For most of the first half of the book, you should be chuckling like a moron, until the battle is joined. Then it’s high octane action and at least one “oh snap” moment before the story takes a turn toward plot and sets up the direction for the next issue or two.
The other great element in this issue is characterization. Onslaught, Prime, and Jetfire (vicariously) are all written in exceptionally distinctive fashion, making them stand out as their own characters amongst a massive cast that could – in less capable hands – become a jumble of interchangeable robot heads.
One final note – if you’ve been following 52 Pick-Up (or just have great taste in comics), you’ll recognize the name of the alternate cover artist. Charles Paul Wilson III is the illustrator of Th3rd World’s The Stuff of Legend and a nominee for “promising newcomer” in this past year’s Eisner Awards. Seeing his art on a slightly more traditional comic cover is exciting – both because I look forward to every chance I can get at pouring over his work, and also because I hope it gets him (and the rest of The Stuff of Legend team) more exposure and notoriety. He, and they, deserve it.
Transformers #10 gets 5 out of 5 confused cultural references and geographical faux pas. There’s not much more this book could have done right.